Nenagh native Donnchadh Dodd has spoken about how he landed a dream job at this year's US Open golf tournament in Shinnecock Hills on Long Island, New York.
Donnchadh, 27, from St Conlon's Road, has spent the past six months working in the USGA's player services department in the run up to the event.
During that time he has been liaising with some of the top golfers in the world, looking after their flights, accommodation, transportation and tee times, among other duties.
“Babysitting,” is how he describes his job to fellow Tipp man Shane O'Donoghue from Clonmel who works for CNN and who hosts his own golf channel on YouTube.
Donnchadh's contract with the USGA comes to an end next month but he hopes to continue working in some aspect of golf.
“I was lucky to get this position,” he says. “It is a real privilige to be involved in events like this.”
He described his week at the open proper as “one of the most intense, but one of the best weeks of my life”.
One of the highlights of the week was “hanging out with the players in the office”.
“Life is not too bad these days,” he says of working out of the USGA office in Southampton, right bang in the middle of The Hamptons.
Shane and Donnchadh talk about the Tipp hurlers losing out this year with Donnchadh revealing that he was reminded of the early exit by Shane Lowry.
“They were the first words out of his mouth,” he says.
Donnchadh played his golf in Nenagh Golf Club off a three handicap and later played college golf for Herriot Watt University in Edinbugh where he studied Real Estate Development.
“I literally grew up at Nenagh Golf Club. I spent a lot of time there,” he says.
While at college he spent his summers working as a caddy in Shinnecock Hills in Southampton, Long Island, which, he says is a “special place”.
Graduating in 2012 at the height of the bust in Ireland, he went back to Shinnecock Hills for one last time and met his now wife, Jennifer Foster. They now have a son, Shane, who is six months old.
Donnchadh is the son of former Nenagh councillor and twice Mayor of Nenagh Virginia O'Dowd, and Ronan Dodd. He has one sister, Sorcha.